The Tragedy of the Princess and the Wasabi Pea

Today, I went to the hardware store to pick up a few things, including a new toilet seat.

Today, I learned that one doesn’t just walk in the hardware store and walk out with a new toilet seat. There is a little-known fact that you need to know the size and shape of the required toilet seat in advance. A very little-known fact.

On the way home, I was stopped at a traffic light, eating a wasabi pea, when I felt my car shake. Someone had rear-ended me!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!






Well, not very hard. More like a tap, a kiss of the bumper. I wasn’t even sure what had happened. I looked in my rearview mirror and the guy behind me was looking embarrassed and making these mea culpa gestures. I was going to get out and see if there was any damage when a guy in a Verizon van pulled up alongside and started yelling at me.

Look, I just wanted to enjoy my wasabi peas at a traffic light. Terry Gross was on the radio. I didn’t ask for this to happen. I didn’t know why people were hitting my car with their car and other people were yelling at me. And then the light changed and more chaos ensued. The Verizon van and I were blocking both lanes of traffic. I finally got my window open, and the guy pointed to the rear-ender and yelled, “He was taxiing!”


The culprit drove a blue station wagon with a canoe strapped to the roof. Was he taxiing a canoe enthusiast?

I looked puzzled. The Verizon guy looked disgusted with me and drove away. Cars were everywhere. I made a quick decision to just start driving because I was feeling very unsafe and confused at the intersection. Maybe if I pulled over past the light, the guy behind me would, too, and we could figure this out.

Oh, I thought. TEXTING, not taxiing!

I started to pull over. The blue station wagon darted around me and zipped off down the street. I sped up enough to get his license plate number, which I dictated to Siri, who made such a fuss about not knowing what I was talking about that I almost gave up on the whole thing.

Anyway, it turned out there was no damage to my car, just to the wasabi pea-craving neurotransmitters that were ultimately disappointed.

4 Responses to “The Tragedy of the Princess and the Wasabi Pea”

  1. Jess says:

    He still hit you. You may want to file a report, in case he later claims damage and tries to claim you drove away. Stranger things have happened! (For example, some people don’t even know that toilet seats come in a variety of shapes in sizes, if you can believe that!)

  2. Jeffrey C says:

    “Kiss of the bumper” sounds like an illicit sex act from the 1950s.

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